Postgame Quotes vs. Miami (Ohio)

Oct. 12, 2013

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UMass Football Postgame Quotes
Massachusetts 17, Miami (Ohio) 10
Saturday, Oct. 12, 2013
Gillette Stadium, Foxboro, Mass.
Attendance: 21,707

Massachusetts Head Coach Charley Molnar

Molnar's opening statement:
"I saw a football team that represents what we are all about right now; a team that plays hard, a team that never quits, and a team that is a disciplined and tough group of guys. Those are the characteristics we have been working to develop since the first day we arrived. Some days you can see it, some days you cannot. It was representative of what we are trying to achieve. We had some outstanding individual performances, but it was really collective performances from the defense, the offense at times and the kicking game.

"I gave out two game balls today; the first was to Dan Markowski, who is an Assistant Athletic Director who oversees football. Dan is a UMass football alum and has been with me since the very first day, from my job interview to my first day on the job. He's been with me through the storms and the good moments on the field. Dan has always been there and been extremely supportive of us. He bleeds maroon and I felt he was symbolic of what UMass football is all about and what our team is all about right now. I also gave one to a player; Khary Bailey-Smith. Khary exemplifies what we are trying to instill in our young men and that's the `next man in' approach. What happens when someone gets injured in the game of football or has to come out, someone has to step up. You can't say, `I was practicing with the second unit, I didn't get as much work. I'm not prepared, I wasn't into it because I didn't expect to play as much.' You need to have your mind ready to go at all times and you need to prepare every day in practice. Khary stepped up with two really big football plays today.

"On the offensive side of the ball, Jamal Wilson had another solid day. Again, Jamal represents our football team, he's young, plays very hard, is extremely disciplined, never questions and just does what is asked of him. He is a team-first guy and we love Jamal. If Jamal only rushed for ten yards today, I would say the same glowing things about him.

"A.J. Doyle had a better performance than he did last week. His two turnovers are points of concern. Both of them were just errant passes and we will continue to work on A.J.'s accuracy and decision-making each and every day that he is a Minuteman. All in all, I thought A.J. played tough. He's not fully recovered from his injuries, but he went out there and never wanted to come out and just went out and did his very best.

"Rob Blanchflower also stepped out there and played tough. You saw him make catches, but what I see from my vantage point was a player who is a fierce blocker and competitor down after down. For Rob to play as hard and long as he does, rarely coming out on offense, it is a tribute to his mental toughness, because you harden yourself through the reps that you acquire in practice every day."

On seeing his guys get rewarded for working so hard:
"It's a great feeling. For these young men who work so hard and have bought in and believed in what we're doing, and they want to be champions, they want to be great, they want to win on and off the field. For them to be able to experience that great feeling of 66 men working together as one; there's nothing like it and that's what makes football a great game."

On how Doyle shook off the early turnover:
"A.J. has got the demeanor you want in a quarterback, he's pretty level. He doesn't ever get high or low; he is relatively relaxed on game day. I thought he was in a better place today because he felt better physically. He's not all the way there (healed). I am banking on next week for him being where he needs to be, but he was in a good place today. When the interception happened, he took accountability on it and said, `I'm ok.' That was it, we talked about it for about five seconds."

Redshirt-Senior Tight End Rob Blanchflower

On getting the win over Miami (Ohio):
"It feels great. I'm just so happy for the team, the University of Massachusetts and all of our loyal fans who have been with us the last few years when we have had our ups and downs."

On what it felt like as the game was winding down:
"To be honest, I was paranoid. I didn't want to stop until there were zeroes on the clock, so we wanted to finish it through until the end. It was a great feeling when we were finally able to give back to the University of Massachusetts, our fans, my teammates and everyone who has put in so much work."

Sophomore Defensive Back Khary Bailey-Smith

On his two interceptions:
"I was just well coached. The coaches called the right play, I was in the right spot and the ball came my way. I just tried to step up and finish what he (Antoine Tharpe) started."

Sophomore Quarterback A.J. Doyle

On the ball Blanchflower caught that was deflected by the defensive back:
"I wanted it back right away. It got tipped up in the air, and the one before the half did too, so I was thinking it was going to be another interception and I was going to have to go to the sideline after that. All of a sudden I saw Blanchflower catch it and run down the field with no one on him. I was ecstatic."

On attempting more passes down the field:
"We did put it in our game plan and our running game helped too. Last week, we were able to take that one shot deep because we were running the ball well and today we were running the ball well. It softened the defense up and that's why we were able to throw the ball deep."

Miami (Ohio) Post Game Quotes

Interim Coach Mike Bath:

On emotions of the week:
"It was an extremely emotional. It really was. From the lows of the mood on Sunday to the simple highs, even before the game today. It was a week with, outside of the death in a family, it was probably the biggest fluctuation of emotions that we have ever had."

On running out on the field:
"It was exhilarating. It really was. Just to lead a team out onto the field. A Miami team that I care so much about and a team I love, that was neat. It was special and something I won't forget."

On the game itself:
"I always hesitate at the end of a game to comment specifically on execution but just on being out there and seeing some things, I really do believe there are probably some things we left out there. We have to make those plays and we just have to be better.

On (Coach Bath) being head coach, calling plays, talking to WR's on the sideline, talking to the defense, etc. and how hard was it to juggle all those responsibilities?
"It was unique. It was the first time I have ever done that. It really was. I've coordinated before. I've coached quarterbacks and receivers before. I've done a lot of different things but to be the head coach and the coordinator, it was a unique experience. It is something that I feel I can juggle and I will juggle the rest of the season and I won't use that as a crutch for today whatsoever."

On TE Rob Blanchflower's 47 yd. TD reception
"(My emotions) probably went from pure excitement to extreme frustration, an extreme low. It was a big play and a play we needed. And again, the thing is, you are never going to lose or win a game on one play. Football is a game of 60 minutes. There probably is almost 200 total plays out there that game. I don't want anyone to feel that is the reason why we lost the game"

On mood in the locker room after an 0-6 start:
"They're like you would expect. They're frustrated. But there is a little bit of a different feel I believe. There still are people hungry. You walk in there and there is disappointment but yet, as I am talking, and when I get done with the team, there are multiple guys, not just one, who say `Let's turn the page and get to next week. Let's go play next week' and that as a coach, when you are where we are at record wise, that is exciting for those young men to be ready and to want to get to next week. And that is what we are going to do. We are going to turn the page tomorrow and focus in on next week. "

LB Chris Wade

On the crazy week and what is was like taking the field with a new coach:
"Well it has been a crazy week. We all rallied behind the changes that were made and we all stayed positive and stayed together. We always stick together as a team and that was the number one goal this week."

What changed after the first few drives where is seemed like the defense was able to shut down UMass' offense:
"Well, I don't think anything changed. We stuck with our game plan and made tackles. I just think that we kind of caught on to what they were doing. We made adjustments and were able to capitalize on them."

On TE Rob Blanchflower's 47 yd. TD reception and what went through his head when he saw that:
"Well, one of our DB's had tipped the ball and I thought for sure it was going to be intercepted, but it ended up with them catching the ball and running it in. It's kind of deflating as a player."

On the mood of the Locker Room with the 0-6 start:
"We are still together as a team. We know this process isn't going to be a one week finish product. We have to stick with the changes being made and our next game is Akron and that is all we are focused on."

QB Austin Boucher:

Thoughts on being able to come out and make some plays, even with everything that has gone on this week.
"There were a couple drives that we were able to put together and you could see the potential. Not everything is going to be crisp but obviously there were a lot of mistakes out there on everyone's part, especially on my part, that we have to clean up. I don't want to make any excuses saying we only had a week. There was some stuff that as football players we should know, that I should know, but at the same time, it is a new offense. We will be that much better in the following week."

How much of the plays can be cleaned up by just looking at film, or is it just practice, reps, etc:
"It's all that but it's just running this offense and knowing "Hey, this is what we are looking at, especially now that we have a game under our belt." Obviously we wish the game went in our direction from a winning take and nonetheless, there are definitely things that we can learn from an offensive standpoint and I think we will be that much better."

Where the team goes from here:
"The things in the locker room as a football player, you play for the opportunity every week. Obviously you have those goals but when adversity hits, you see it in the NFL and college every year, there are always teams that have some struggles and obviously with our struggles, we just have to be able to answer the call and respond every week and knowing that "Hey, we are lucky to be playing this game and this is an opportunity to go out and play to the best of our ability and as long as we keep that in mind, keep a winning attitude, eventually we will start to get things to go in our direction."



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